Florence Griswold (December 25, 1850 to December 6, 1937) turned a family home into a boarding house in Old Lyme, Connecticut. This became the residence of many artists and was actually the basis for what was then famous and is now recalled as the Old Lyme Art Colony. The grounds and surrounding acreage are now a museum, the Florence Griswold Museum, and a National Historic Landmark. The museum website relates that
Cats have long played an important role in the history of the Griswold boardinghouse. Although the cats were most surely useful in controlling the mice that would naturally be a part of a rural homestead, they often outnumbered the guests.
Here is a photo of this beautiful and kind lady.
Because of her,
During the early years of the 20th century, the Lyme Art Colony, centered in Miss Florence Griswold’s boardinghouse, became America’s most famous summer art colony.
Childe Hassam was one of the famous painters there.